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The Power of Ancient Grains: Easy, Healthy Vegan Overnight Oats

Ancient grains are a staple in my diet. I eat it several times a week. But when summer heats up, I turn to overnight oats. Let me show you how I make it.

Easy Healthy Vegan Overnight Oats

  • 1/2 cup organic rolled oats

  • 1 teaspoon of flaxseed

  • 2 teaspoons of chia seeds

  • 1 teaspoon of cinnamon (optional)

  • 1 cup+ unsweetened plant-based milk

Add all the dry ingredients to single serving containers. I use 12 ounce mason jars although any airtight container is fine. A lightweight, durable container would be best for breakfast on the go.

After blending the dry ingredients, add the liquid. Since I am vegan, I use unsweetened plant-based milk. Pea or almond milk works best. Coconut milk is tasty but a little runny. I add milk up to the 12 ounce line on the jar, which may be a tad more than 1 cup.

One more good stir and it is ready for the fridge. As the name implies, overnight oats usually soak overnight. On occasions when I forget to make a batch, I have eaten them after 4 hours.

My favorite way to eat overnight oats is with fruit and something crunchy - usually unsalted dry roasted slivered almonds or pumpkin seeds. Fresh fruit is best but frozen works well, too.

bowl of overnight oats with fruit and nuts
Overnight oats with coconut, frozen fruit, and almonds

For variety sometimes I will use overnight oats to make smoothies. I start with frozen fruit, add some oats, and unsweetened plant-based milk. Depending on the ratios, you can make a drinkable smoothie or a smoothie bowl.

smoothie bowl of overnight oats blended with frozen fruit
Smoothie bowl of overnight oats blended with frozen fruit topped with fresh strawberries, coconut, and almonds

Humans have been eating oatmeal, flaxseeds, and chia seeds for thousands of years. There are many health benefits associated with consuming these grains. The list includes lowering cholesterol, strengthening the immune system and cardiovascular system, balancing the gut microbiome, resisting cancer. I will include links in case you are interested in learning more.

Some things to keep in mind.

  • Go easy with high fiber foods when you start. If you experience bloating, back off and reintroduce oatmeal slowly.

  • Choose organic if you can. A 2018 study found concerning levels of pesticides in non-organic oats. Cost per serving for the brand I buy is under 50 cents.

  • Check the sugar content of your milk. I prefer unsweetened milk with no added sugar.

  • My version may be too bland for people. I get it! I used to be a sugar fiend. But after years of gradually cutting back, foods I used to crave are too sweet for me now. If you aren’t getting enough sweetness from the fruit, a tony drizzle of maple syrup or honey is ok while your taste buds are adjusting.

smoothie bowl with overnight oats and frozen blueberries
Smoothie bowl overnight oats blended with frozen blueberries topped with coconut, almonds, and honey



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